Review: Retro/Grade

If Jeff Minter’s Space Giraffe and Guitar Hero had a bastard child this game would be it. Retro/Grade is a shooter with a difference brought to you by 24 caret games. It has the mechanics of guitar hero but the look of Space Giraffe all wrapped up into one. If that’s not enough for you the game is also played in reverse! Reverse I hear you say? Yes the first level is actually the last level and the first thing you see upon play is the final boss blowing up and the credits rolling. Now that’s all out of the way lets get onto the review.


  • Interesting game play choices. Guitar Hero as a shooter never felt so fresh
  • Has guitar support and works very well, A good reason to dust the bad boy off and have a blast
  • A lot of bright colours and detailed back grounds that re act to the music
  • Challenge mode which is the true bread and butter of the game. Each scenario demanding skill under increasingly difficult circumstances like low health, No power ups etc. And there is loads of challenges to get through
  • Loads to unlock from artwork to music to ships. Ships can see you flying a T-Rex in a ship or even a Minecraft ship
  • Rewind feature ala Grid, Forza so if you mess up and have enough retro fuel you can rewind time and undo your cock up
  • Campaign names keep it humourus with names like Rick rolling or we take all your bases as an example
  • A DJ mode where you can play unlocked music on a set of turn tables and cross fade, adjust BPM and scratch to your hearts content
  • You can unlock cheats to aid you on your quest to finish all the challenges
  • The menus and HUD feel very StarDust/Geometry Wars both in look and style
  • Has online leaderboards for score chasers
  • Has a tutorial and a practice section to help nail those harder levels
  • The music choices may not to be to every ones taste, I personally didn’t like it
  • The campaign is short compared to challenge mode. On easy you will easily do the campaign within 2 hours
  • The game play can get very repetitive after you’ve seen all the types of variations thrown at you.
  • Blink and you will die on the harder difficulties
  • As good as the back grounds are, They can actually put you off as ships fly by or bright lights resemble enemies in some cases
  • Playing with a controller is fine but when attempting extreme difficulty it severely lacks precision and a guitar is better suited
  • A few sections in levels have that “its there as a filler” feeling and doesn’t quite fit the rest of the level layout
In summary it is a good game and its good to see a new style of game, But I cant help but feel custom music would of really set this game off. The levels are paced well enough to enable that whole “Just one more go” mentality. At least try out the demo and give it a go.

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!

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